As a personal fitness coach, I work with a lot of athletes and bodybuilders, and it happens too often that I notice clear signs some of them have been taking anabolic-androgenic steroids.
The sudden muscle growth and side effects are very obvious, and they can have a significant health impact that is completely avoidable.
A much better alternative is aiming for significant muscle gains with a legal bulking steroid based on natural ingredients. And to find out which ones actually work, we had a team of 17 clients who volunteered to help out with our research and testing over a six-week period.
Here are the best bulking steroids from our results.
Our Top Product Recommendations (September 2023)
1 - D-BAL (Editor's Choice)
D-Bal is the anabolic steroids alternative that came out on top after several weeks of testing it with a few clients.
Crazy Bulk has kept the potent steroids formula as simple as possible and relied on credible scientific resources to choose ingredients that are legal and safe. It contains a good dose of Ashwagandha to promote exogenous testosterone production .
It also contains magnesium and vitamin D3, which scientists have linked to faster recovery times and improved protein synthesis .
It also comes in very convenient and small capsules so that you can spread the dose out over the day if needed.
“In terms of testosterone and hormonal balance, ashwagandha has shown promise in supporting testosterone levels.”
- Jordan Stachel, M.S., RDN, CPT, everlywell.com
- L-Isoleucine : 300 mg
- Ashwagandha : 200 mg
- Suma Root : 200 mg
- Tribulus Terrestris : 75 mg
- Simple formula with proven ingredients to improve lean muscle mass gains without trenbolone acetate or deca durabolin
- Contains added magnesium for faster muscle recovery
- Great herbal ingredients to boost serum testosterone levels
- The capsules are small enough to make them easy to swallow
- Some users prefer taking powder supplements
2 - Testo-Max
Diet and resistance training are the keys to natural muscle building, but you can speed things up when you boost your endogenous testosterone levels.
My dietitian pointed out that the combination of magnesium, zinc, and vitamin B6 is no accident; studies have shown that this is an effective combination to boost free testosterone levels .
During our testing phase, we noticed a consistent improvement in muscle mass, which was faster than in a baseline test we did without any legal bulking steroids.
The great thing about improving natural testosterone levels is that it also doesn’t come with side effects, and none of our clients reported having issues.
- Zinc : 10 mg
- D-Aspartic Acid : 2,352 mg
- Ginseng Red Powder : 40 mg
- Fenugreek Extract : 40 mg
- Has reliable scientific studies backing up key ingredients
- Practically no side effects were reported by users
- Measured improvements in testosterone production and testosterone cycle
- Requires taking four capsules each day to get a full dose
3 - Clenbutrol
This is another great legal bulking steroid that our clients now regularly add to their stacks. We used this for several cutting phases, as the ingredients seem to work well for boosting body fat metabolism.
The one my dietitian pointed out was bitter orange extract, which contains p-synephrine to boost fat-burning processes .
It also contains some guarana, which acts as a stimulant . And our testing did find that we felt more focused and motivated during training.
Just give yourself a few days to experiment with the timing as some of our clients had different experiences ranging from 20 minutes to an hour.
- Garcinia Cambogia : 450 mcg
- Guarana Extract : 450 mcg
- Bitter Orange Extract : 342 mcg
- Vitamin B3 : 63 mg
- Positive reports of shorter cutting phases and faster fat loss
- Helps to maintain muscle gains from bulking during a cutting phase
- Natural stimulants can help with mental focus and motivation
- You need to spend a few days getting the intake timing right
4 - Winsol
Winsol is an anabolic steroids alternative that we’ve seen some consistent results for clients going through a fat loss or cutting phase.
The most interesting ingredient is a solid dose of choline that scientists have shown to be linked to potent fat burning properties and appetite suppression .
I found it helped very well when I took it first thing in the morning to extend fasting times until after a cardio session.
At the same time, taking this legal bulking steroid seems to help retain the muscle gain from a bulking phase so that you don't lose all that hard work during cutting.
- Acetyl-L-Carnitine : 555 mg
- Choline : 300 mg
- DMAE : 150 mg
- Wild Yam : 300 mg
- Consistent excess fat burning properties within a few days of starting a cycle
- Helps you keep huge muscle and strength gains from bulking
- Added choline helps with fasting and fat metabolism
- It’s not the cheapest supplement for burning fat
5 - TestoPrime
This is another legal bulking steroid that gave us sustained improvements in muscle mass building over full bulking cycles.
What I liked the most is that the company is very clear and open about every single ingredient and the exact amount.
That makes planning a stack of cutting or bulking steroids for muscle growth a lot easier.
It’s predominantly based on herbs and minerals, and I noticed a good dose of D-Aspartic Acid. This ingredient has been shown to have a link to testosterone production .
- D-Aspartic Acid : 2,000 mg
- Ashwagandha : 668 mg
- Fenugreek : 800 mg
- Zinc : 40 mg
- Measured blood test results for boosted testosterone levels
- Provides a clear list of the exact ingredients to make stacking a lot easier
- Available with large bulk order discounts to reduce the cost of full steroid cycles
- You’ll have to take four capsules a day to get the full dose
6 - Anadrole
Anadrole is a legal bulking steroid that mainly combines different types of protein with a few herbs that can all help with improved muscle function.
The most interesting ingredient is shilajit, which has been linked to improved endurance and strength during resistance training .
The impact of the ability to train harder is that you’ll increase muscle mass a lot more effectively and more consistently with less of a chance of running into plateaus.
The other thing that our testing revealed is that we all felt less muscle soreness in the hours after training, indicating that it’s helping with muscle tissue gain and recovery.
- Tribulus Terrestris : 600 mg
- Soy Protein Isolate : 200 mg
- Whey Protein Concentrate : 200 mg
- Shilajit Concentrate : 100 mg
- Helps to relax muscle cells after training to speed up recovery processes
- Boosts performance levels at the gym for increased muscle growth
- Comes in easy to swallow capsules to add to your breakfast routine
- Doesn't contain ingredients to help with body lose fat
7 - Trenorol
This is the legal bulking steroid where we got a lot of feedback from our testing team about the impact on pumps.
It seems to be down to a good dose of nettle leaf, which scientists have linked to an improvement in blood flow .
It also contains pepsin, which my dietitian pointed out as being an ingredient that promotes breaking proteins down into amino acids . It’s ideal for bulking steroids, as it can speed up the body’s ability to create new muscle tissue.
Our overall test results showed positive results on muscle mass gain, especially when stacked with other legal steroids above.
- Beta-Sitosterol : 600 mg
- Samento Inner Bark : 300 mg
- Nettle Leaf Extract : 300 mg
- Pepsin : 75mg
- Works well to improve strength levels in training
- Boosts nitrogen levels to boost protein synthesis during recovery
- Doesn’t have any reported side effects
- I’d like to see some ingredients to help burn fat
8 - Decaduro
The Decaduro anabolic steroids alternative was a favorite with some of our bodybuilding clients, who especially liked the combination of L-citrulline and L-arginine.
This seems to work well to boost blood flow to deliver more energy to muscles and increase vascularity and pumps .
But there’s also a good dose of Ginseng, and there are dozens of studies that have tied this Asian ingredient to a significant increase in T-levels, likely due to its impact on testosterone binding protein .
“L-Citrulline is an amino acid. It is efficiently turned into L-arginine in the kidneys after supplementation, which makes it a good choice for increasing nitric oxide synthesis in the body.”
- Kamal Patel, Editor & Co-founder at Examine.com
- L-Arginine : 150 mg
- Acetyl-L-Carnitine : 75 mg
- L-Citrulline : 75 mg
- Ginseng : 375 mg
- Delivers great pumps for better muscle tone
- Measured improvements in reduced fatigue levels
- Stimulant-free pre-workout is ideal for evening gym sessions
- Some added fat loss ingredients would be great
9 - Ecdysterone
This was a completely new legal bulking steroid that I hadn’t heard of before. But there is evidence that Ecdysterone can help you gain muscle mass a lot quicker and, in some cases, within six weeks .
The problem is that such an effective natural ingredient for developing new muscle tissue has gained the attention of scientists who advise global sporting bodies on what things to add to banned substance lists.
It's not on such a list yet, but that could happen.
Overall, our testing results were good, but we got similar results with products above that didn't have that risk of becoming a banned substance.
- Ecdysterone Hydroxypropyl B-Cyclodextrin Complex : 1,000 mg
- Simple supplement based entirely on high-quality Ecdysterone
- Reports of good impacts on muscle gain within weeks
- Seems to absorb easily without any stomach issues
- Ecdysterone may become a banned substance
10 - Anabol Hardcore
The final one of our best legal steroid for bulking list is Anabol Hardcore. And if it hadn’t been for some decent results, I wouldn’t have listed it here because of the proprietary label.
Not knowing the exact amounts of ingredients makes it very difficult to stack with other bulking steroids.
We do know that this anabolic steroids alternative is mainly based on Dicyclopentanone .
There are some animal studies that have shown a positive effect, and our own results do indicate the easier building of muscle tissue.
- Ecdysterone Hydroxypropyl B-Cyclodextrin Complex : 1,000 mg
- Good impact on muscle tissue development within about eight weeks
- The capsules are small enough to easily swallow
- It’s an affordable option for anyone on a limited budget
- The company hides behind a proprietary blend
Now we’re getting into the details of supplements and how you can determine how well they work to build lean muscle mass.
It’s one thing to have well-chosen and proven ingredients in your formula, but if the dosage is too low, then they probably won’t be all that effective.
But how do you know if there’s enough?
The only way to determine that is to research studies for an ingredient and see what dosage successful clinical trials used. But that takes a lot of time and effort.
The good news is that we did all of that research and found that the above products have good ingredients at the right dosage based on what scientific studies say.
Taking legal bulking steroids as powder or capsule supplements really won’t make any difference at all in how you gain muscle mass due to anabolic effects.
It’s mainly a question of preference.
I personally prefer taking an oral steroid stack in capsule form as it gives me a lot more flexibility when planning out my intake for the day.
My stack can include anywhere from three to seven different supplements, and having all the capsules lined up for the day means I don’t waste time measuring scoops of powder and cleaning out a shaker every time.
But I totally get it that some people prefer powders which they can mix with smoothies.
The great news is that legal steroid alternatives don’t have any side effects like a medical anabolic steroid.
Drugs like that can impact liver function and toxicity and cause high blood pressure, acne, and even mood swings and aggression.
With legal steroids, you mainly need to look out for any allergic reactions to the ingredients, so it’s always a good idea to check the label for anything you know you might be sensitive to.
From my experience and research with my dietitian, the only thing we saw was that some people have some bloating after taking legal steroids, but that typically settles down quickly.
Legal Steroid Cycle Length
You should also take a look at the recommended cycle length for an anabolic steroids alternative. This should ideally match up with your intended bulking cycle.
Typically, these legal steroids recommend that you take them for 8-12 week cycles and then take 104 weeks break. That can be a great approach to planning out your overall bulking and cutting phases.
It should also work fine if you run shorter cycles, but I wouldn’t shorter than four weeks as that’s how long most legal steroids will take to show maximum effect. Don't forget post-cycle therapy after finishing.
Suitability For Stacking
When your goal is to build up lean muscle tissue, you don’t just want to rely on one non-injectable steroid supplement.
Taking only bulking steroids will have great results, but to achieve the ultimate physique, you’ll want to also stay on top of excess body fat.
During your bulking phase, those extra calories you eat will lead to gaining fat, and that’s why I recommend that you stack legal steroids that target both muscle development and fat gain.
The great thing with the above recommendations is that you can easily combine three of four of them into the best steroid stack and achieve much better results than by choosing just one.
Unless you test legal oral steroids, you simply won’t know how effective they are in boosting natural testosterone production and helping you gain more lean muscle mass.
But if you have dozens of products to choose from, then that testing can take you months before you know which product works best.
That’s why all of our testing is so valuable for our readers and clients. All the above legal bulking steroids gave us great results during our own trial phases, which means you can save yourself a lot of time, money, and effort to figure out which ones work.
One thing I would say about looking at the price tags of legal steroid alternatives is that this should be the last step you take and only by comparing ingredient dosages and effectiveness.
You might find a cheap legal steroid, but if it’s half as effective for performance and muscle protein synthesis compared to our top recommendations, then you’re not getting value for money.
I would recommend that you set yourself a goal and then get the best supplements to get you to that goal.
Then add to the stack according to your budget, rather than focusing on individual prices.
Who Should Take A Bulking Steroid?
Anyone who has hit a plateau or needs to speed up muscle weight gain should take a natural bulking steroid.
Anabolic steroids alternative have a similar effect to illegal hormone drugs, just not at the same speed. But you can still gain lean muscle mass faster than you normally would.
This doesn’t have to mean you’re a bodybuilder, but if you need to get stronger for your chosen sport, then legal bulking steroids are a great option to improve human growth hormone production.
They are also a good option for anyone who has been struggling with the effects of low testosterone on weight gain. Breaking that health impact with legal bulking steroids can significantly boost your overall well-being.
You should also regularly go to the gym for legal steroids to have the desired effect. These are not magic pills that will bring down your body fat percentage and build up lots of lean muscle mass while you sit on the couch all day.
Related Article: Do Anabolic Steroids Shut Down Testosterone
Who Shouldn't Take Bulking Steroids?
Any athlete who wants to gain fitness but not more muscle mass shouldn’t take legal bulking steroids. There are many types of sports where more muscle mass will not be the solution and can actually slow down progress.
For example, long-distance runners have to build up muscle strength, but they don't want to carry large bulky muscles.
How many Olympic marathon runners have you ever seen that look like Arnold in his prime?
I would also say that you shouldn’t start taking legal bulking steroids if you haven’t sorted out your diet for a bulking phase yet. What you eat and how much you eat play a critical role in protein synthesis. Get that right first, and then start adding supplements for muscle gain to your routine.
And finally, if you’re going through some form of medically prescribed testosterone enanthate suppression or replacement therapy, then talk to your doctor before resorting to legal steroids.
Will You Need To Adjust Your Diet?
No, you don’t need to make diet adjustments before taking an anabolic steroids alternative other than what you would do for a regular bulking phase.
That will mean eating a lot more calories to make sure you don’t lose weight from all the extra lifting, and you’ll need a lot more protein.
When you then add the right type of non-injectable steroids, it will add up to improved protein synthesis and faster muscle building.
“Leucine is the king AA, it turns on the anabolic signaling pathways and initiates muscle protein synthesis (MPS) by activating mTORC1.” - Stuart Phillips, writer at mysportscience.com.
Are Natural Bulking Steroids Banned in Sports?
No, natural bulking steroids are not banned in sports. They mainly contain vitamins, minerals, herbs, and amino acids to boost your body’s natural ability to produce more testosterone and lean muscle mass.
Can You Take Legal Bulking Steroids Long-Term?
Yes, you can take legal bulking steroids long-term. Most of these products are designed to be taken in 8-12 week cycles with a couple of weeks break at the end of each cycle. But you can repeat the best steroid cycle continuously without running into health issues.
What Is the Closest Legal Supplement to Steroids for Bulking?
D-Bal is the closest legal supplement to the best steroids for bulking. It’s based on a few herbal ingredients and amino acids that trigger a natural response in the body to build muscle mass.
What Legal Steroids Do Bodybuilders Take for Bulking?
Bodybuilders often take legal steroids like Ashwagandha and Fenugreek for bulking. These are two of the most common T-booster supplements that come closest to anabolic steroid drugs in the long term.
Which Of These Bulking Steroids Should You Choose?
Out of all the best bulking steroids we tested out, our results consistently showed the best results with D-Bal. It has a simple formula of proven ingredients with reliable scientific evidence to support them.
It’s the closest we’ve seen to illegal steroids and comes with the major benefit of not having nasty side effects. In fact, it’s perfectly fine to take this legal steroid alternative long-term to achieve better results for your physique.
Order your first supply today and consider stacking it with some of the other recommendations for even better results.
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